Reflections on the Therapeutic Relationship

This assignment provides students with an opportunity to:

1) Demonstrate the use of personal reflection in establishing and maintaining the therapeutic relationship in a way that allows for professional and skill development.
2) Illustrate an understanding of the therapeutic alliance and the various factors that can strengthen or weaken the alliance.
3) Exhibit the use of knowledge regarding evidence-based practices in relation to skills necessary to establish mutually agreed upon work with clients in their environments.
4) Display an appreciation for the unique needs of various populations at risk.

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Assignment structure:

Each chapter within Norcross is representative of a specific skill or concept used within clinical practice (see list below). For the first part of the assignment, select five concepts and give a working definition of each.

The therapeutic relationship
Norcross: Chapter 2 Alliance in Individual Psychotherapy
Chapter 3 Alliance in Child and Adolescent Psychotherapy
Chapter 11 Repairing Alliance Ruptures

Use of professional self
Norcross: Chapter 6 Empathy
Chapter 7 Goal Consensus and Collaboration
Chapter 8 Positive Regard and Affirmation
Chapter 9 Congruence/Genuineness

Adapting to therapeutic context
Norcross: Chapter 10 Collecting Client Feedback
Chapter 12 Managing Countertransference
Chapter 16 Culture

Identifying and overcoming obstacles to change
Norcross: Chapter 13 Reactance/Resistance Level
Chapter 14 Stages of Change
Chapter 15 Preferences

Client relational styles and expectations
Norcross: Chapter 17 Coping Style
Chapter 18 Expectations
Chapter 19 Attachment Style
Chapter 20 Religion and Spirituality

• For each of the concepts selected provide either an excerpt from a process recording or an excerpt from a transcript and explain how the concepts are illustrated within the work you selected.
• Note: (Transcripts can be accessed either through the Psychotherapynet database offered through the Touro library most of the videos have a manual with transcript)
• For each of the concepts illustrated above reflect on the work and critically evaluate the application of these skills.
• Select one client you are currently working with in your internship. Give a brief vignette of the client and the presenting issues. Identify and discuss some of the unique struggles for the client and how that impacted the therapeutic relationship in reference to one or more of the following: age, class, race, culture, ability, gender, gender identity and expression, immigration status, mental health status, political ideology, religion, sexual orientation.

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